The Upright Citizens Brigade @ The Paley Center for Media – 11.8.7

The Paley Center for Media hosted Amy Poehler, Matt Besser, and Ian Roberts for an evening of review and reflection on The Upright Citizens Brigade. The panel was moderated by Onion head writer, Todd Hanson.

–Filling in for Matt Walsh in the role of Bashful-at-Panels-Matt Walsh was Improv Everywhere’s Agent Wimpy.

–“We don’t like comedy that’s absurd for absurd’s sake,” said Ian Roberts. He tossed out key concepts like HEIGHTENING THE GAME and EXPLORING THE REALISM when describing the things that improvisers and sketch writers should adhere to.

–In the UCB’s formative years in Chicago (early 90’s), they said they often had their street theatre pranks broken up by police such as with Virtual Reality, an audience participation event in which the crowd was given a scenario and encouraged to pretend it’s real. On one particular night, the scene was “March on City Hall” and the audience was issued torches and fake guns and lead out into the streets in angry mob fashion. The fuzz quickly appeared to bust up the crowd and hauled away a defiant Horatio Sanz who didn’t break character even as he was being stuffed into a police cruiser.

–The panel was mostly just a pleasant innertube ride down Clips River until Matt Besser made A BTW BOMBSHELL ANNOUNCEMENT in the final 30 seconds of the event. He said people always ask him if he wants to do movies or TV shows and he tells these people what he actually wants is his own network, so they could do things their way. He explained that with recent advances in Internet technologies, having your own network is now totally possible.